Red Velvet Buttermilk Brownies with Chocolate Chunks

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Diamonds are said to be a girl’s best friend. They are said to put a twinkle in any girl’s eye.

Perhaps that is true for most, but not for me they’re not. Cold stones do nothing for me. Sure they might be pretty and shiny but that’s all it is good for – sparkle. Pfft.

Give me brownies over bling any time of the day. Brownies. Oh how they make my heart flutter. I’ve been baking brownies since I started this blog and every time I bite into a warm piece, I feel that all is right in the world.

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Brownies, especially fudgey ones, are very uplifting. The same way a mother bakes cookies and serves it with milk to their children, the way a brownie crumbles in my mouth after going past my lips is absolutely comforting and ethereal. A good rocking brownie can turn any dull day bright.

I’m constantly trying to find a brownie that I can live with for the rest of my life. I’ve come close, but the search continues. My next venture is to try new fangled brownies.

Last Sunday I started with Red Velvet Buttermilk Brownies. My itchy fingers swapped the white sugar for dark brown sugar, and I added chocolate chunks. I also halved the sugar and red colouring. Because I didn’t use the frosting, I should not have reduced the sugar. But my chocolate chunks balanced it off pretty well. Nestle Tollhouse Chocolate Chunks are pretty sweet anyway so the balance was there.

Texture-wise, I felt these were rather fudgey. I expected moist crumbs since I was using buttermilk. Perhaps I did something wrong. These were not my favourite brownies, but they were rather novel. Mahogany-hued, and rich, they were just what I needed on a Sunday afternoon.

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What respite it brings me, carrying out pans of baked goods like brownies out of the oven on a perfectly relaxing day. I really wouldn’t mind doing it for a living. It’s been my dream for a long long while.

My zest for whipping up more glorious bakes has amplified. My mind (and hands) is itching to do something about it. I want to do a project. Something is up my sleeves I’m telling you that. You will know in due time.

Meanwhile, have a brownie instead of a diamond today 😉

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Red Velvet Buttermilk Brownies

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk or sour milk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 ounce bottle red food coloring (2 tablespoons)

(*My modifications: 1tbsp red food colouring and 1cup dark brown sugar, 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chunks)

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 15x10x1-inch baking pan; set aside. In a large bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

In a medium saucepan combine butter, cocoa powder, and 1 cup water. Bring mixture just to boiling, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add the cocoa mixture to flour mixture; beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed until thoroughly combined. Add eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, and red food coloring. Beat for 1 minute (batter will be thin). Pour batter into the prepared pan.

Bake about 25 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack.

Posted on 11th Mar 2014 in baking, brownies, cakes, cocoa  |  6 comments

Blood Red Desire

Red Velvet Cake

As a safe, and very amateur baker, I like to stick to my guns about what I know best. Chocolate chunk cookies, apple pie, brownies, cupcakes, and repeat cycle. My repertoire has undoubtedly stagnated. Work, life, and all other distractions had drowned out that innate desire just to bake. Like passion becoming white noise.

Wait wait. Before you think I’m going to close this blog. Let’s just say that the passion, the desire to bake. It is not gone. I found that out recently. I’ve been baking up a storm almost every week for the past month. A  jolt (or a muse, whatever you call it) was the prescription I needed. A new friend of mine (who is an inspiration just by what he does for a living), asked me one day to describe in vivid detail what I envisioned my bakery to look like – decor, smell, ambience, menu. As much as I have daydreamed about my bakery, I’ve honestly never sat down to think deep and imagine it as if it were real. After I was done describing, he said he could visualise it pretty well.

That for me, was a lovely reminder. That if someone could ‘see’ it, surely I could bloody well make sure I see it through since it’s one of my first love. If you desire something that much. Make it happen.

So I could see no way forward than to dig up my KitchenAid and start to wear it out. It would mark one of the many new changes and experiences this year has brought me.

And last Sunday I mustered the courage to bake something utterly new. Surprisingly, although it’s one of my favourite cakes, I have never baked it. Until now.

Red Velvet Cake

Red ‘bloody’ velvet cake. It’s so simple I was afraid I would ruin it. But guess what? It was easy as hell!

Red Velvet Cake

Layered cakes are something I am determined to master. You will notice that the frosting didn’t hold at the last layer. Ah well, we all start somewhere don’t we.

I brought it to my acting class (something new I’m challenging myself with!) last night and everyone enjoyed it. Dare I say it made it easier for me to break the ice and make new friends since it was also the very first class!

When in doubt, make red velvet cake. This is my new mantra 😉

Posted on 4th Mar 2014 in red velvet cake  |  8 comments

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